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Getting recruited by an eSports team requires standing out
Finding yourself at the end of a disappointing solo queue match, you lean back in frustration into that old worn-down gaming chair. Tired of being matched with players who don’t have the talent to make a name for themselves in eSports, you are now ready to climb out of the amateur moshpit and onto a pro team. However, as many gamers know, eSports recruiting is not exactly a straightforward process, leaving you to wonder if it’s possible to turn this pipedream into a reality.
With new pro-gaming organizations popping up all the time, what was once a limited pool of professional teams has suddenly ballooned into a substantial list of recruiting possibilities. In this article, we will dive into the world of eSports recruiting and provide you with tips on how to get the attention of talent scouts. Here are the best eSports recruitment tips:
- Make Them Respect Your Name In Solo Queue Play
- Transform Yourself From Player To Student
- Be A Regular At Events Like LCS Scouting Grounds Circuit
Showcasing Your Talent To eSports Scouts
Many professional gamers who have tasted the sweet nectar of eSports success would likely admit that their road to stardom was filled with countless obstacles. Whether it be joining multiple teams, not getting paid after tournament victories, or politics getting in the way, the fact is that excelling in an industry with a limited number of seats is not an easy task. What separates them from other players, is that despite the many challenges, they were able to find ways to distinguish themselves from the rest of the pack. Let’s look at some of the ways you can do the same to get noticed by pro teams.
1) Make Them Respect Your Name In Solo Queue Play
Solo queue play is a term describing the act of a gamer joining a randomized team during an online gaming match, as opposed to playing with friends. Many amateur players have ridden the wave to team recruitment by competing in solo queue, as they amassed more attention from pro scouts with each high profile victory. While players have no control over their team selections within solo queue, many still find ways to shine brightly. A prime example of a player establishing their name primarily within the boundaries of solo queue play, is eSports icon Rasmus “Caps” Winther, or Caps.
Today we show what we are capable of 🧙♂️😈 pic.twitter.com/ZvvpRyZs2b
— Rasmus Winther (@G2Caps) October 18, 2019
Beginning his professional gaming career in 2015, over the next three years, Caps would go on to join over seven different teams as a Midlaner in the famous MOBA title League of Legends. However, before he became frequently known by the nickname “Baby Faker” due to his flashy gameplay, he first established a reputation in the pits of solo queue play. Over time, his gameplay caught the attention of European pro team Enigma Esports, which signed him to the team in October 2015. Only a few years later he inked his first high-profile team signing with Fnatic in 2017, then in 2018, he joined the world-renown G2 Esports.
Throughout those years, Caps would experience a combination of first-place team tournament wins and also painful losses. Nevertheless, his consistent individual performance helped drive his recruitment to more prestigious eSports organizations, but his legend was first born in solo queue. The lesson here to remember is to not despise the humble beginnings and grind of solo queue because the right mixture of attitude, persistence, and talent can get the attention of eSports scouts.
2) Transform Yourself From Player To Student
A consistent trait found amongst top eSports athletes is the obsessive attention to detail to gain a competitive advantage over their opponents. This could include examining their opponents’ strengths and weaknesses during a film session or diving deep into historical data to devise a better in-game strategy. On the opposite side of this, far too many gamers are only concerned with playing the game, as opposed to being a student of the game. Could you go into detail to discuss the technical mechanics of elite team gameplay? Or, knowing if a popular title is built foundationally on the Unity or Unreal game engines? Often, eSports team scouts are looking for “students” of a game because it indicates a level of maturity and professionalism, a trait that teams value due to the level of financial investment they make in their players.
A great way to stand out from other gamers is to increase your overall knowledge of the games you play, including an understanding of how the player ranking system works. For example, many MOBA games use the traditional ELO system, or some derivative of it, for calculating player rankings. The system is used to match players of relative skill, assigning new classifications based on the outcome of a match. While this may sound rather obvious, the measurable impact on a gamer’s rankings can differ depending on the pre-match ELO score assigned to each player. Armed with this information, as a player, you can be far more knowledgeable about the impact a particular match can have on your rankings. Also, which matches you stand to lose more than you could potentially gain.
Sharing these types of details with scouts helps give them more insight into your thought processes and your professional approach to the game. This shows that you are more than just a gamer, but also thoughtful and measured in how you approach your craft. And what scout wouldn’t want that type of person on their team?
3) Be A Regular At Events Like LCS Scouting Grounds Circuit
This one should come as no surprise, but if you are looking for eSports recruiting, you should participate in events where many scouts will be watching. Over the last five years, more eSports scouting events catering to an open tryout format have been available to amateur gamers to showcase their talents. One prime event to get your name in front of the right people is the LCS Scouting Grounds Circuit, a collaboration tournament hosted by Riot Games and FACEIT. With the goal of promoting talent in the North American League of Legends community, this may potentially be one of the biggest path-to-pro opportunities that you haven’t yet discovered.
The 2019 edition of the tournament took place between July-September providing players of any skill level the chance to compete for a $60,000 grand prize and also qualify for the LCS Scouting Grounds Finals. The format of the circuit was composed of 10 total online events, which included qualifier rounds, playoffs, and finals. If you are looking to get recruited to a pro team, these are the types of events you cannot afford to miss.
While this is only one example of an eSports tournament designed to help unknowns in the gaming world get their name out there, you can be confident that more of these events will be available in the future as long as participation and enthusiasm remain high. In 2019, Team E Turner (TET) won the tournament with a final-round victory. While no future is a sure bet, the individual players on the team likely benefited from a substantial amount of scouting exposure, which could lead to more opportunities in the future. The moral of the story here is that if you are looking to stand out from the crowd, maintain a networking mindset with industry peers and stay aware of new opportunities to get on a pro team’s recruitment radar.
Your eSports Recruitment Journey Has Only Just Begun
Hopefully, this article was able to provide some insight into just a few of the ways you can stand out from the crowd and take your eSports aspirations to the next level. Now that you are armed with more information, the next question is, what will you do with this new knowledge? While none of these things individually may propel you into fame, embracing these concepts will at least help provide a starting place. And, if all else fails and one day you feel like throwing in the towel on your eSports career, remember this quote:
“Many of life’s failures are people who did not realize how close they were to success when they gave up” — Thomas Edison
eSports Recruiting [INFOGRAPHIC]
For your convenience, we have created an infographic detailing the major steps for eSports recruiting.